November 2018
President's Letter
Thanksgiving is only four weeks away and 2020 is only fourteen months away!  Whoa - time is flying by!  Many of you in HR have a lot of activities currently taking place with open enrollment, merit increases, bonus projections, annual succession planning tied in with performance management and so on.  Did I also mention holiday parties and constant recruitment considering the local employment is approaching 3%? Never a dull moment in the world of HR and
 the 4th quarter can be especially demanding – hang in there, New Year’s Eve is right around the corner! Still though, it’s hard to believe 2018 is almost in the books for the SuncoastHR Chapter.  We do have a fabulous November Chapter Meeting involving “Diversity and Inclusion – Bias in Decision Making” with Erik Smith as our guest speaker from Inclusivity, LLC.  We also have the opportunity to be gracious hosts to our neighboring chapter, HRTampa.  As of last count earlier this week, over 130 members from both chapters have registered for the November 7th breakfast meeting.  We do have a maximum capacity at Feather Sound Country Club, so if you plan on attending, I would strongly encourage you to register soon in the event the meeting sells out… 
We also have the chance as a chapter to once again give back to the community with our canned food drive to benefit CASA.  Please remember to bring your canned food items to our November meeting so we can deliver the product directly to CASA.
Lastly, mark on your calendar the Chapter Holiday Party on December 12th at The Birchwood in St. Petersburg.  What a great venue to ring in the holidays with fellow colleagues and friends. 
We look forward to visiting with everyone at our breakfast meeting on the 7th!   
-Darren Veneri
Joint Suncoast HR & HR Tampa Breakfast Meeting
       Title program
Diversity & Inclusion - Bias in Decision Making
Wednesday, November 7, 2018
Feather Sound Country Club 2201 Feather Sound Dr, Clearwater, FL  33762
7:30 am
8:00 am - 9:30 am
Erik C. Smith, MBA. is currently the Managing Member of Inclusivity, LLC (formerly Carlton Consulting, LLC), a cultural competence and marketing advisory firm based in Florida, specializing in Cultural Competence, Community Relations and Cross-cultural Marketing for both for profit and not for profit enterprises. Most recently Erik was the Cultural Competence and Inclusion Director at Valpak where he developed a cultural competency rubric to show how diversity, coupled with inclusion, creates opportunities for innovation, drives revenue and enhances recruitment, retention and professional development of employees and suppliers. Erik’s educational background consists of a Master’s in Business Administration from Case Western Reserve University and a Bachelor of Arts from Duke University

Program Overview

This interactive workshop will focus on the question of Why Cultural Competency? Consider the first node of the cultural competence continuum and how to identify these tendencies while exposing and understanding that we all have bias. Cultural Competence is the ability to interact effectively with people of different cultures.   
Cultural Competence comprises four components: a. Awareness of one’s own cultural world view b. Attitude towards cultural differences, c. Knowledge of different cultural practices and world views, and d. Cross-cultural skills  
The workshop will build your understanding while providing tools to work through the bias and evolve along the continuum.   
Members and Guest are welcomed –
Register at:  or  

Suncoast HR is proud to support CASA for the 2nd time in 2018 with our Fall Food Drive. 

CASA provides important abuse prevention and emergency shelter services in our community and we want to show them how much we appreciate everything they do. 
Please bring your donations of non-perishable food or grocery gift cards to our November 7th meeting.  
If you prefer to bring your donations directly to CASA you can find them at 1011 1st Ave. N, St Petersburg

CASA’s Wish List:  
Non-Perishable Food (snacks and dinner)
(No boxed pasta, green beans, cranberry sauce or corn please)
         • Cereal
         • Boxed juices
         • Real fruit juice
         • Jelly
         • Peanut butter
         • Canned tuna
         • Canned chicken
         • Spaghetti sauce
         • Pop tarts
         • Canned veggies and fruit
         • Box mashed potatoes 
• Crackers
• Cookies
• Dried fruit
• Oatmeal
• Pancake mix
• Syrup
• Condiments
• Spaghetti O’s and Ravioli
• Taco Shells or kits
• Rice
  Gift Cards 

November Legislative Update
Florida's Minimum Wage Will Increase on January 1 to $8.46 per Hour and $5.44 for Tipped Employees 

The Florida Minimum Wage Act, which applies to all employees in Florida covered by the federal minimum wage, requires the state's Department of Economic Opportunity to calculate a new minimum wage rate each year on September 30. The wage rate is based on the percentage increase in the federal Consumer Price Index (CPI) for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers in the South Region for the 12-month period prior to September 1. 

Florida's minimum wage, effective January 1, 2018, is currently $8.25 per hour. According to our discussions with state government officials, beginning January 1, 2019, Florida's minimum wage will be $8.46 per hour, which is approximately a $0.21 or 2.5 percent increase in the wage, due to the change in the CPI.

Employers of tipped employees who meet eligibility requirements for the tip credit under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) may count tips received as wages under the FLSA. However, Florida employers must pay tipped employees a direct wage. Effective January 1, 2019, the new minimum wage for tipped employees should become $5.44 per hour plus tips, which is calculated as equal to the minimum wage ($8.46) minus the 2003 tip credit ($3.02), for a direct hourly wage of $5.44 as of January 1, 2019. 

In deciding whether the federal or state minimum wage applies, federal law directs that businesses must pay the higher of the two. The Florida minimum wage will prevail over the federal rate until (and unless) the federal minimum wage exceeds the state rate. When inflation is positive (i.e., the price of consumer goods and services increases) the CPI increases. However, under Cadet v. Florida Agency for Workforce Innovation, if the CPI is negative—in times of deflation—the minimum wage does not decrease. That happened in 2016. Employers must pay their employees the hourly state minimum wage for all hours worked in Florida. The definitions of "employer," "employee" and "wage" for state are the same as those established under the FLSA. 

An employee who has not received the lawful minimum wage after notifying his or her employer and giving the employer 15 days to resolve any claims for unpaid wages may bring a civil action in a court of law against an employer to recover back wages plus damages and attorneys' fees. The state attorney general also may sue to enforce the minimum wage. 

An employer found liable for intentionally violating minimum wage requirements is subject to a fine of $1,000 per violation, payable to the state. The Attorney General of Florida or other official designated by the Florida Legislature may bring a civil action to enforce the minimum wage.   

William E. Grob | Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C.
100 North Tampa Street, Suite 3600 | Tampa, FL 33602 | Telephone: 813-221-7228 | Fax: 813-289-6530 | | Bio 
P.O. Box 2111 Pinellas Park, Florida 3378
Copyright 2014. Suncoast Human Resource Management Association.